That 70's Show Revisited

Sometime in the next couple of years we are going to see the virtual death of the dollar and its death is going to be perpetuated by the very recovery the administration is now engineering.

The death I speak of may not necessarily come in the form of terrible exchange rates, but it will definitely manifest itself in the form of very high interest rates and likely inflation as well (through commodities again).

U.S. Urban Rail Transit requires $3.195 trillion

We are at the end of an era – the end of cheap oil, the end of suburban sprawl, the collapse of the world’s “shadow banking system”, the end of Wall Street’s arrogation of our nation’s financial system, the end of treating our natural environment as a “free” externality that corporations and consumers can ravage at will. In this time, as we transition from one era to another, billions is the mark of a mere politician.

Paris on the Potomac (or) A Tale of Two Cities

Francis Cianfrocca, a/k/a Blackhedd from Redstate, has started his own blog called Markets and Policy. Although our political opinions are frequently poles apart, his purely economic analysis is excellent, and always intelligent. If you are interested in reading well-done analysis from the "other" side, I highly recommend him.

Needless to say, he is opposed to Obama's stimulus plan, calling it Paris-on-Potomac:

What is in The Economic Stimulus Bill of 2009? - Part V

I want to bring to your attention a list of Projected Jobs by Congressional District. Then, Kaiser has a web page of total unemployment rates, the total residents per state, the poverty rate of each state and even the breakdown of citizenship status by state.

Center for American Progress interactive map on which states would get how much of the Stimulus money per Gross State Product (GSP).

Does this distribution make sense? Let's take the case of Michigan. According to the Projected Stimulus jobs per Congressional District, the break down is as follows:

Michigan 109,000 Projected Jobs Created

  • Congressional District 1 Michigan 7,400
  • Congressional District 2 Michigan 7,900

Is America Bankrupt?

Following Enron's [and Worldcom's] demise Congress enacted Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) to ensure the transparency of management practices for public companies. Enron's financial engineers had created off-book derivatives that worked just like an off-shore toilet: they would dump all their "phantom" debt there, but unfortunate for Enron's executives, the flusher didn't work. The debt was actually real. Enron was able to hide its debt so long as its energy revenues were growing. Once that stopped the house fell down.

Jobs For U.S. Workers Stripped Out of Stimulus Bill Behind Closed Doors - Update It Lives!

Shockers of all shockers, the Sanders-Grassley amendment survived the corporate lobbyists and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce! Senator Sanders press release:

Senate and House negotiators agreed to prohibit banks and other firms that take taxpayer bailouts from replacing laid-off U.S. workers with lower-paid foreign workers.

The proposal by Senators Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) was added to the economic recovery package in the Senate. A conference committee retained the provision in the version of the bill that is expected to win final congressional approval later today.

An investigation by The Associated Press found that a dozen banks now receiving more than $150 billion in bailouts requested visas for more than 21,800 foreign workers over the past six years to replace laid-off American employees. The same banks announced at least 100,000 job cuts in recent months.

The measure would require the bailed-out banks to hire only Americans for two years, unless they could prove they were not replacing laid-off Americans with guest workers. Because the banks have announced mass layoffs, the measure would effectively place a moratorium on the H-1B visa program.

“With thousands of financial services workers unemployed, it is absurd for banks to claim they can’t find qualified American workers,” Sanders said.

“While we are suffering through the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, the very least we can do is to make sure that banks receiving a taxpayer bailout are not allowed to import cheaper labor from overseas while they are throwing American workers out on the street.”

What is in The Economic Stimulus Bill of 2009? - Part IV

Update: The Senate voted yes on cloture. What this means is now the bill can come up for a vote to pass it with a simple majority.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 is now online.

The amended Senate version, February 7, 2009 is here (click this) (large pdf).

To find out the latest, well frankly watch the Senate Floor Proceedings and also go to The Library of Congress links.

Huffington Post is hosting a what's in the bill citizen legislative text watchdog volunteer tell us what you found effort.

The Buy American provisions are on page 414, line 12. This covers Steel, Iron and probably the most important provision, use of American made manufactured goods.

How Many Jobs in the Stimulus Bill Could Be Offshore Outsourced?

A simple question. An obvious question. While the non-debate debate rages on over tax cuts in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, this fundamental question of how many real jobs will go to real American workers needing a not asked.

So, I'm asking it. I do not have an answer.

We have already seen TARP bail out recipients replace Americans with foreign guest workers.

Buy American

By now you would have to live in a cave to not experience the blow back in the simple act of buying U.S. steel. This is the Buy American provision in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

This is not even the real issue. The question really should be why are not U.S. taxpayer funds to be used first and foremost to create jobs for U.S. workers?

Banks receiving massive U.S. taxpayer funds are firing U.S. workers while keeping temporary foreign guest workers. Why? Because they are an important conduit to offshore outsource and they are cheaper.